Responsible Gaming affects us all! Playing online should be an entertaining, exciting and a positive experience, but it is no secret that online gaming can become a problem for some of us. It’s easy to get carried away, especially when it comes to gambling at online casinos and sport betting operators.
It’s definitely not easy to control and restrict online gambling activities as we dream of winning the big jackpots, searching the internet for the best casino bonuses or clicking on banner ads on social media. In this article we will discuss Responsible Gaming, how gambling can become a big personal problem, where you can find the support needed and the road to recovery.
What is Responsible Gaming?
The term Responsible Gaming refers to the responsibility that we should play for entertainment purposes only, and there is an increased focus from operators to monitor, educate and support problem players and combat addiction.
If you are a fan of online casinos and sports bets, you have probable read that every operator platform offers settings for Responsible Gaming. In fact, among their Terms and Conditions, you will find a section dedicated to promote it, according to the relevant legislation. This is one of the player protection tools an online casino offer to make sure a player can stay in control while enjoying the gaming experience.
How can you gamble responsibly?
Responsible gambling means to use the game just for the purpose it was intended; fun and entertainment. This means that it shouldn’t be used as a source of income, or as a way to deal with anxiety.
Gambling responsible also means taking breaks instead of playing for long periods of time, using only money that you can actually afford to lose, and of course, setting limits when it comes to money and time.
As setting time and money limits is one of the biggest struggles for gamblers, online casinos offer an option to do it for you. Most online casinos include a built-in tool in their platforms that allow you to pre-set limits in the deposit amounts and time you’ll spend every day. For instance, let’s say that you decide to play the casino slots and set a time limit of two hours. When the time has passed, the platform will tell you that your daily limit or loss-limit has been reached and will prevent you from playing any longer.
Problem gamblers are chasing losses
I have been one of these people who have lost control of my gambling. I don’t blame the jungle of daily casino adverts on TV or receiving bonus offers from Mr Vegas. I was LIVE betting on every sports, I wanted to make quick money on my sports knowledge about Premier League, NHL and Tennis. Unfortunately I had no discipline, I was all passion and no brain. I fell into the classic trap: I was chasing my losses! It was impossible to maintain control, I kept making more deposits to my player account and I was over spending my budget. I lost track of time as I was gambling for hours and I started to place higher stakes than intended. I didn’t agree that my betting was problem, I was just unlucky… Yeah, right!
Gambling addiction is a serious problem
When we talk about “problem players” we refer to players who are investing too much time and too much money on gambling. They become addicted to gambling, and have a hard time stopping. While some gamblers get over their issue in time, some others go deeper into the problem and develop an addiction. This is a serious situation known as “compulsive gambling”.
Compulsive gambling is more than just spending more time or money that you can afford. It is an addictive disorder where the gambler can’t stop, as with many addictions if it isn’t treated properly, it just gets significantly worse over time.
The feeling of having “action”, which means gambling can have the same effect of taking a stimulant or tranquilizer that changes the gambler’s mood. Nevertheless, the same as a heavy hangover, after the effect wears off, gamblers need to face the consequences, loss of money or precious time they were supposed to invest in some other activity.
How to identify a gambling addict?
According to the American Psychiatric Association; “Gambling disorder involves repeated, problem gambling behavior. The behavior leads to problems for the individual, families, and society.” It is important to understand that when a person has gambling problems, the issue goes deeper than just “bad habits”. It has been recognized as an emotional illness.
Just like some people can’t stop using drugs or alcohol, compulsive gamblers can’t’ stop the urge to gamble. Gambling can have the same effect of taking a stimulant or tranquilizer that changes the gambler’s mood. Nevertheless, the same as a heavy hangover, after the effect wears off, gamblers need to face the consequences of an addiction that can threaten personal relationships and lead to bankruptcy.
There are some clear signs that can help you identify a gambler:
• No longer interested in other activities apart from gamble money online.
• Using gambling as a way to fight depression or deal with anxiety.
• Dishonest about gambling habits and money spent online.
• Spending hours and hours on reading match previews, checking stats and discuss betting markets.
• Struggle to sleep and keep checking results and match updates on the phone.
• Getting into arguments with loved ones when discussing gambling.
• Spending money on gambling instead of paying basic necessities.
• Having financial problems: debts, mortgages, as a consequence of gambling.
Contact a Responsible Gaming analyst
The most important thing to do is get help. In every country, there are helpline numbers that offer help 24/7, they are totally confidential and willing to offer specific resources that will allow the caller to get help in their area with treatment and support resources. In addition, they also provide support for families and relatives of compulsive gamblers.
Each gaming operator has a customer service team and well-trained Responsible Gaming (RG) analysts and if you contact them through email or chat they will take necessary action that fits you the best.
Self-exclusion programs for problem gamblers
Online casinos like Wildz.com and Videoslots offer their players an option called self-exclusion. It is to help players and customers who are concerned about gambling behaviour, struggle to main control of an enjoyable and safe playing experience or just need a break from gambling.
To request a self-exclusion, please contact our support team or speak to one of our RG analysts. You can also enter a self-exclusion from your player account and this will happen:
– you will not be able to login to your player account
– you will not be able to make a deposit to your player account
– you will not be able to play with your players account
You will only be eligible to re-open your player account after the self-exclusion period has passed (for a period of 6 months, 1 year or 5 years).
Gambling is a complicated disorder. Numerous surveys show that adults who play casino online and place bets on sports betting can become addicted gamblers and this can affect men and women like wise, no matter their social or financial status.
When the compulsive gambling disorder increases, the frequent gamblers have a higher risk for gambling problems which lead into serious personal problems, both health-wise and financially.
I feel most of the gaming operators online in 2022 is working hard to keep high standard of responsibility to offer a fun and trusted play experience that protects online users, and there are several tools in place to prevent or reduce potential gambling addiction. Please set limits on how much you can afford to play. What’s your budget?